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How many songs to send out on a demo
Old 14th September 2012
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
How many songs to send out on a demo

I have about 5-6 strong tracks I want to release, can I send them all at once, and to multiple labels at the same time? (None specify any track limits) thanks.
Old 14th September 2012
  #2
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
Send 2... the strongest ones.
Old 14th September 2012
  #3
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Can I send the same tracks to different labels?
Old 14th September 2012
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 10 years
That's generally bad etiquette. Start with your top preferred label, and if they don't take work your way down the list.
Old 14th September 2012 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jalexandros ➑️
Can I send the same tracks to different labels?
Yeah, but unsolicited demos will be ignored by most labels. If you have friends of friends at labels, go down that path...
Old 14th September 2012
  #6
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
thanks
Old 14th September 2012 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toth ➑️
That's generally bad etiquette. Start with your top preferred label, and if they don't take work your way down the list.
If you're 100% confident the label will even listen, then yes perhaps. But I doubt labels are emailing other labels saying "hey, did you get this demo too? WHAT!"
Old 14th September 2012
  #8
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
I was reading another thread where someone gave advice to send to as many labels that fit your style, not sure if he meant the same tracks or not though..
Old 14th September 2012
  #9
Deleted 60622ed
Guest
3
Old 14th September 2012
  #10
Deleted 60622ed
Guest
Or 2
Old 14th September 2012 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Addict
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by jalexandros ➑️
I was reading another thread where someone gave advice to send to as many labels that fit your style, not sure if he meant the same tracks or not though..
I don't think there is any formula. Just get their attention. Usually amazing music is enough to get their attention.
Old 14th September 2012
  #12
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Okay thanks, if they like the material they will presumably ask me to send more right?
Old 14th September 2012
  #13
Lives for gear
 
jrhager84's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
2 strongest.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I777
Old 14th September 2012
  #14
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Heathfinnie's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Most labels will give demo submission guidelines. I know Ghostly is 2 via soundcloud. If you do something different it just says to them that you just don't care enough to follow their instructions. Check with the label.
Old 14th September 2012 | Show parent
  #15
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Eric J's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
6, definitely 6. No more no less...

Kidding. No, in all seriousness...

Quote:
Originally Posted by jalexandros ➑️
Okay thanks, if they like the material they will presumably ask me to send more right?
Try not to focus on one label, most successful artists release on several labels at once. You're trying to build your name as a brand, so you need to get as much exposure as possible. I wouldn't commit too many tracks to any one single label unless they are one of the really massive ones. You're unlikely to garner their attention right away, so focus on spreading your music out as much as possible.

You say you have 5 or 6 tracks ready to go? Try spreading those tracks out among 5 or 6 different labels. Once you establish a relationship and a reputation for good work, you'll find it easier to get an outlet for your recordings and likely pick up some additional work along the way.
Old 14th September 2012
  #16
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
okay cool thanks Eric, and guys for your answers.
Old 14th September 2012
  #17
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
I've personally never had success with demos. Every release I've locked in has been from labels seeking me out. But I should note that I started my own label spring of last year and pressed vinyl. Although part of the reason for it was because I was frustrated with the lack of acceptance I received from my demos, but I still believed in my music and figured I just wasn't good about sending the right trax to the right place. Since then, progress has accelerated beyond expectations, beginning with some small labels, which has now blossomed into six upcoming releases with established and respected labels through the end of the year and into 2013. Every single one came from requests instead of sending (although I have sent out tracks several times throughout the course of the last year--the same issue I've always had cropped up)

I don't send music to labels I don't like/follow, but I think I'm just bad at guaging what they're interested in...my sound varies in style quite a bit, although in the most general sense its house and techno. However, while I may have one or two tracks that are deep, dubby techno in the vein of Developer or Skudge, I also have more industrial or acid stuff along the lines of old DBX...as well as filtered disco house or a piano anthem, or just straight-up deep evolving grooves like say, Mr. G or Radio Slave. Oddly enough, it's almost always my least-expected tracks that get picked up for release, with those that I personally find the strongest to not always be the labels' own picks. So, if I ran with that advice, I'd probably still be shopping! Basically, when I do get demo submission requests, I usually send 15-25 at once that I think the label may be into. But I make a lot of music....

It's working out though, and I've finally been offered a mutliple-release deal with a label that has a penchant for changing it up, so they have taken a nice and wide selection (although, with the exception of two tracks...again its all stuff I never expected to be picked!)

So my advice other than starting your own label, is to select 5-10 tracks. Look at it this way, a single artist EP could be anywhere from 2 to 4 tracks typically. So you'll want to make room for what I call "curveballs." They may just pick one to do a single w/ remixes or a compilation...but they also may decide to do a cohesive 4-track EP with no remixes (my personal favorite). You'll want to offer your strongest tracks plus a few extras as the "curveballs" that maybe you don't personally feel as strongly about (although you think its solid or your friends do) and that may deviate a bit from the rest of the demo.

I think more than ever, the best labels are looking for artists that stand out by doing something a little different and have the capability to be diverse. They want someone that can offer the unexpected. The best labels are going to want someone they can work with longterm and develop. One trick ponies with really solid <insert subgenre style here> may get deals here and there, but unless they are at the top of their game consistently for their sound...it's gonna be a tough road ahead.

One last thing--coming from someone with a label--make sure you address the label as personally as possible for one. Secondly, skip the bull**** accolades, bio, hype, and personal info, because frankly, I don't give a **** (nor does anyone else that cares about the music) and thirdly, either host an archived file (rar or zip) on your own ftp, or use a service like Soundcloud that I don't have to deal with jumping through hoops to listen.

Finally, although a lot of others will disagree with me, I wouldn't send files over 192kbps to anyone. Thievery is one issue, but secondly, some labels have major concerns about exclusivity...and while I don't fault anyone for submitting the same tracks to a few labels, it is important to protect your work until you work out a deal. So I always let 'em know that I'll follow up with high-quality files once they actually make a more finalized selection. I think any quality label understands this approach 100%

Good luck!
Old 14th September 2012
  #18
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Send em all if they are good, they can pick the best ones themselves. They arnt gonna think less of u If u send 7 tunes. Just don't send any that you dont feel are strong
Old 14th September 2012 | Show parent
  #19
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atma's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
i wouldn't send any more than 4. but really i'd simply send the fewest possible that make the hugest impression. if you have 2 stand-out tracks, send those 2. people listening through demos are unlikely to even listen through them in their entirety; they'll make up their mind within the first 30 seconds, or less.
Old 15th September 2012 | Show parent
  #20
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Heathfinnie's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by getmethough ➑️
Send em all if they are good, they can pick the best ones themselves. They arnt gonna think less of u If u send 7 tunes. Just don't send any that you dont feel are strong
So if they say no more than 2 they won't think less of you if you send 7?
Old 15th September 2012 | Show parent
  #21
Wildfunk
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by getmethough ➑️
Send em all if they are good, they can pick the best ones themselves.
They got no time to listen to all 6 tracks. It's more realistic that they'll stop listening after the second mediocre track and just delete the email (without listening to track #6 which is the bomb).

So it's better to send them only THE BEST track. If they like it, they'll sign it and perhaps ask for more tracks of you.
Old 15th September 2012
  #22
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Heathfinnie ➑️
So if they say no more than 2 they won't think less of you if you send 7?
What If your taste is different to theirs?

for example the tracks that u think are your 2 best, might be way too 'out there' for the label & just be producer porn

Then the one you made in a day that u don't feel is your strongest might be right up their street.

This happened to me recently I sent 5 tunes an the guy who owns the label who is a musical hero of mine picked te one which I thought was my weakest & released it

I wouldn't try to second guess people an just send everything that's good.
Old 16th September 2012
  #23
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jrhager84's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
They expect you to know your strongest stuff. So you send it. Send ten tracks and you're arrogant. Send one and you're an idiot. Also, no long intros. You've got about eight seconds to grab someone's attention. Just my experience...

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I777
Old 16th September 2012
  #24
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
I used to hear 3, but I don't see a problem with sending a finished album to be released.

With SoundCloud these days, you might as well send a link?
Old 16th September 2012
  #25
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
I guess I'm arrogant, because my demos are large. 10-30 tracks large.

You know what though? It works. I snagged a 3 record deal because I sent 25 (9 of which they're releasing). And out of those 9, they picked 7 I thought were not the demo's strongest (I save those for my own label). Different strokes for different folks.

If you personally address me in your demo email, I WILL check it, and I will at least skim through each track just to make sure I don't miss a bomb.

But frankly, it doesn't surprise me if most labels are using this arbitrary demo guideline that so many of you seem to recommend. Most labels are rehashing the same old crap.

I still say the best method is to get to know people or put out stuff yourself and get requests. Even though I listen to demos, 100% of past and future tracks in the pipeline for my label are from people I've built a relationship with or seeked out.
Old 16th September 2012
  #26
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jrhager84's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
I can almost guarantee that the 25 songs you sent to a label weren't completely cold.... and *if* they have the time to (no offense) surf through 25 songs from every 'no-name' that emails them, they're hurting for business. Just my casual observations...

-J
Old 17th September 2012
  #27
Gear Addict
 
🎧 10 years
As I said before, I don't send cold demos, just fulfillments of requests. So there's that caveat.
Old 17th September 2012
  #28
msl
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msl's Avatar
3 max


.
Old 17th September 2012
  #29
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jrhager84's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by thefunnel ➑️
As I said before, I don't send cold demos, just fulfillments of requests. So there's that caveat.
So how does that even relate at all?

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I777
Old 17th September 2012
  #30
Wildfunk
Guest
There are a lot of "labels" that will sign all (or most) of your demo tracks just to have many releases.

Example: I've heard this track in the essential mix of Maceo Plex from february 2012:



This is one of the better tracks of the Tanztone Records label, released officially in june 2012.

YouTube plays (artist page): 719
Soundcloud plays (artist page): 955
Soundcloud plays (label page): 0

So the track isn't really in promo but they got the next 13 releases (eps of course) in petto:

Quote:
Next steps:

[TT057] Jamie Power - Mode Of State EP
[TT058] Michael Otten - Saturday Morning EP
[TT059] Michael Scott - It's the inside EP [incl. remixes by Matteo Floris and Al Bradley]
[TT060] V.A. Deep Throat Compilation Volume Two
[TT061] Rafael Cerato - Time EP
[TT062] Frankie Sanzi - Speach Of The President EP
[TT063] Venzio - Trip To Berlin EP
[TT064] Tropicall ft. Nena Keshi - Singing For Money EP
[TT065] Obsolete Architect - You've Got It All EP
[TT066] Alinep - Bagalso EP
[TT067] Atomic Electrolab feat. Anthony Poteat - Sweet EP
[TT068] TBC
[TT069] TBC
[TT070] Venzio - Past To Present EP
So it's not hard to sign many/all of your tracks today, but this doesn't matter at all as you can see above.

Even with promo from Maceo Plex.

Even on a label founded 2009 with 70 releases.
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